Tag Archive: Pumpkin

Nov 19 2016

Pumpkins, Not Just For Carving

Re-posted from October 22, 2011 When most of us think of pumpkins, we think of the orange orbs that get carved up for Halloween and pumpkin pie with gobs of whipped cream for dessert at Thanksgiving but pumpkins come in all shapes, colors, sizes and varieties. Some are good only for decoration, while others are …

Continue reading »

Oct 30 2014

Pumpkins, Not Just For Carving

Re-posted from October 22, 2011

When most of us think of pumpkins, we think of the orange orbs that get carved up for Halloween and pumpkin pie with gobs of whipped cream for dessert at Thanksgiving but pumpkins come in all shapes, colors, sizes and varieties. Some are good only for decoration, while others are not only decorative but very tasty in pies, soups and stews.

According to Wikipedia pumpkin “is a gourd-like squash of the genus Cucurbita and the family Cucurbitaceae (which also includes gourds). It commonly refers to cultivars of any one of the species Cucurbita pepo, Cucurbita mixta, Cucurbita maxima, and Cucurbita moschata, and is native to North America.” Some of the fun activities besides decorative carving for Halloween are Festivals and competitions with pumpkin chucking being among the most popular. Chucking has become so popular that some competitors grow their own special varieties that will survive being shot from catapults and cannons. The festivals are most dedicated to the competition for recipes and the competition for the largest pumpkin. This year that honor went to a 2058 pound beauty from Northern California will be on display this weekend at the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival in San Francisco.

The pumpkin is one of the main symbols of Halloween and the Wiccan holiday of Samhain, which is a celebration of the end of the year, the final harvest and the coming of winter. The earliest that a craved pumpkin was associated with Halloween is 1866. Throughout Britain and Ireland the turnip has traditionally been used at Halloween, but immigrants to North America used the native pumpkin, which are both readily available and much larger, making them easier to carve than turnips.

In cooking, the the fleshy shell, seeds, leaves and flowers are all edible. Canned pureed pumpkin is readily available in stores, as are the small, sweet variety of fresh pumpkin for the ambitious cook to make their own puree or for stews. When it comes to pies, the easiest is the canned, my favorite being Libby’s with the recipe on the label, label, label. It’s the only recipe I have ever used for pumpkin pie and I’ve never has a complaint.

Pumpkin and all it parts are also very nutritious, containing many vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidents. There is also an interesting medical study of pumpkin extract on type-1 diabetic rats:

(P)ublished in July 2007, suggests that chemical compounds found in pumpkin promote regeneration of damaged pancreatic cells, resulting in increased bloodstream insulin levels. According to the research team leader, pumpkin extract may be “a very good product for pre-diabetic people, as well as those who already have diabetes,” possibly reducing or eliminating the need for insulin injections for some type-1 diabetics. It is unknown whether pumpkin extract has any effect on diabetes mellitus type 2, as it was not the subject of the study.

One of my favorite recipes is Pumpkin Cheesecake with Bourbon Sour Cream Topping that is more popular than pie with my family.

Photobucket

Recipe and baking tips are below the fold
 

Oct 29 2014

Carving Pumpkins 101

First published 10/27/2012

Rather than try to explain how to carve a pumpkin here is a video that is a handy 5 minute guide.

How to Carve a Killer Pumpkin with Leah D’Emilio

And for the more ambitious and artistic pumpkin carvers among us, here is some inspiration with seasonal music.

Amazing Halloween Jack-O-Lanterns

Nov 09 2013

What’s Cooking: Pumpkin Soup

Republished from October 17, 2012

Pumpkin SoupYes, I’m on a pumpkin kick but the the sweet, small “pie” pumpkins have been plentiful in the market this year and I found an easy way to roast them. But, is your lacking time, canned pumpkin works just as well. My favorite is Libby’s which can be found in most grocery stores year round and you cannot beat the pie recipe in the label.

So let’s start with picking the pumpkin. Pie pumpkins are small, about 8 inches in diameter and yield about two to three cups of puree per pumpkin. Like picking any squash, look for one that is firm, no bruises or soft spots, and a good orange color.

To bake the pumpkin: This method from The Pioneer Woman works amazingly well, except don’t cut up the pumpkin. I found it easier to clean the “guts” out after the pumpkin was cooked.

  • Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Place the washed and dried whole pumpkin on a cookie sheet. No need to cut the top off of cut it into chunks.
  • Place in the oven for about an hour. Remove and let cool.
  • Cut the cooled pumpkins into quarters and with a spoon, gently separate the pulp and seeds from the flesh. If there’s a little of the stringy pulp left, don’t worry, it won’t hurt.
  • Gently scrape the flesh from the skin with a spoon or a knife.
  • Place the gooey flesh in a food processor and pulse until smooth. A potato masher, food mill, hand-held immersion blender or a ricer work well, too.
  • As I said, you should have about 2 to 3 cups of puree per pumpkin.

    Now you’re ready to make soup. I’ve tried various recipes and ended up with my own version.

    Ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 4 cup unsalted vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup light cream, or half and half
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • In a large sauce pan, heat 1/4 cup of vegetable broth over medium heat. Add the chop onion, and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Add more broth if needed, do not let the onion dry out.

    Add the remaining broth, pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the cream and cook until hot. Don’t boil.

    Ladle into warmed individual bowls and garnish with black pepper. Serve immediately.

    I serve the soup garnished with parsley and toasted pumpkin seeds, shredded Gruyere, croutons, chopped green onions and sour cream on the side.

    Oct 19 2013

    Carving Pumpkins 101

    First published 10/27/2012

    Rather than try to explain how to carve a pumpkin here is a video that is a handy 5 minute guide.

    How to Carve a Killer Pumpkin with Leah D’Emilio

    And for the more ambitious and artistic pumpkin carvers among us, here is some inspiration with seasonal music.

    Amazing Halloween Jack-O-Lanterns

    Oct 28 2012

    What’s Cooking: Pumpkin Soup

    Pumpkin SoupYes, I’m on a pumpkin kick but the the sweet, small “pie” pumpkins have been plentiful in the market this year and I found an easy way to roast them. But, is your lacking time, canned pumpkin works just as well. My favorite is Libby’s which can be found in most grocery stores year round and you cannot beat the pie recipe in the label.

    So let’s start with picking the pumpkin. Pie pumpkins are small, about 8 inches in diameter and yield about two to three cups of puree per pumpkin. Like picking any squash, look for one that is firm, no bruises or soft spots, and a good orange color.

    To bake the pumpkin: This method from The Pioneer Woman works amazingly well, except don’t cut up the pumpkin. I found it easier to clean the “guts” out after the pumpkin was cooked.

  • Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Place the washed and dried whole pumpkin on a cookie sheet. No need to cut the top off of cut it into chunks.
  • Place in the oven for about an hour. Remove and let cool.
  • Cut the cooled pumpkins into quarters and with a spoon, gently separate the pulp and seeds from the flesh. If there’s a little of the stringy pulp left, don’t worry, it won’t hurt.
  • Gently scrape the flesh from the skin with a spoon or a knife.
  • Place the gooey flesh in a food processor and pulse until smooth. A potato masher, food mill, hand-held immersion blender or a ricer work well, too.
  • As I said, you should have about 2 to 3 cups of puree per pumpkin.

    Now you’re ready to make soup. I’ve tried various recipes and ended up with my own version.

    Ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 4 cup unsalted vegetable broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup light cream, or half and half
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • In a large sauce pan, heat 1/4 cup of vegetable broth over medium heat. Add the chop onion, and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Add more broth if needed, do not let the onion dry out.

    Add the remaining broth, pumpkin, cinnamon and nutmeg. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir in the cream and cook until hot. Don’t boil.

    Ladle into warmed individual bowls and garnish with black pepper. Serve immediately.

    I serve the soup garnished with parsley and toasted pumpkin seeds, shredded Gruyere, croutons, chopped green onions and sour cream on the side.

    Oct 27 2012

    Carving Pumpkins 101

    Rather than try to explain how to carve a pumpkin here is a video that is a handy 5 minute guide.

    How to Carve a Killer Pumpkin with Leah D’Emilio

    And for the more ambitious and artistic pumpkin carvers among us, here is some inspiration with seasonal music.

    Amazing Halloween Jack-O-Lanterns

    Oct 27 2012

    Pumpkins, Not Just For Carving

    Re-posted from October 22, 2011

    When most of us think of pumpkins, we think of the orange orbs that get carved up for Halloween and pumpkin pie with gobs of whipped cream for dessert at Thanksgiving but pumpkins come in all shapes, colors, sizes and varieties. Some are good only for decoration, while others are not only decorative but very tasty in pies, soups and stews.

    According to Wikipedia pumpkin “is a gourd-like squash of the genus Cucurbita and the family Cucurbitaceae (which also includes gourds). It commonly refers to cultivars of any one of the species Cucurbita pepo, Cucurbita mixta, Cucurbita maxima, and Cucurbita moschata, and is native to North America.” Some of the fun activities besides decorative carving for Halloween are Festivals and competitions with pumpkin chucking being among the most popular. Chucking has become so popular that some competitors grow their own special varieties that will survive being shot from catapults and cannons. The festivals are most dedicated to the competition for recipes and the competition for the largest pumpkin. This year that honor went to a 1818 pound beauty from Canada that was on display at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx.

    The pumpkin is one of the main symbols of Halloween and the Wiccan holiday of Samhain, which is a celebration of the end of the year, the final harvest and the coming of winter. The earliest that a craved pumpkin was associated with Halloween is 1866. Throughout Britain and Ireland the turnip has traditionally been used at Halloween, but immigrants to North America used the native pumpkin, which are both readily available and much larger, making them easier to carve than turnips.

    In cooking, the the fleshy shell, seeds, leaves and flowers are all edible. Canned pureed pumpkin is readily available in stores, as are the small, sweet variety of fresh pumpkin for the ambitious cook to make their own puree or for stews. When it comes to pies, the easiest is the canned, my favorite being Libby’s with the recipe on the label, label, label. It’s the only recipe I have ever used for pumpkin pie and I’ve never has a complaint.

    Pumpkin and all it parts are also very nutritious, containing many vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidents. There is also an interesting medical study of pumpkin extract on type-1 diabetic rats:

    (P)ublished in July 2007, suggests that chemical compounds found in pumpkin promote regeneration of damaged pancreatic cells, resulting in increased bloodstream insulin levels. According to the research team leader, pumpkin extract may be “a very good product for pre-diabetic people, as well as those who already have diabetes,” possibly reducing or eliminating the need for insulin injections for some type-1 diabetics. It is unknown whether pumpkin extract has any effect on diabetes mellitus type 2, as it was not the subject of the study.

    One of my favorite recipes is Pumpkin Cheesecake with Bourbon Sour Cream Topping that is more popular than pie with my family.

    Photobucket

    Recipe and baking tips are below the fold
     

    Oct 22 2011

    Pumpkins, Not Just For Carving

    When most of us think of pumpkins, we think of the orange orbs that get carved up for Halloween and pumpkin pie with gobs of whipped cream for dessert at Thanksgiving but pumpkins come in all shapes, colors, sizes and varieties. Some are good only for decoration, while others are not only decorative but very tasty in pies, soups and stews.

    According to Wikipedia pumpkin “is a gourd-like squash of the genus Cucurbita and the family Cucurbitaceae (which also includes gourds). It commonly refers to cultivars of any one of the species Cucurbita pepo, Cucurbita mixta, Cucurbita maxima, and Cucurbita moschata, and is native to North America.” Some of the fun activities besides decorative carving for Halloween are Festivals and competitions with pumpkin chucking being among the most popular. Chucking has become so popular that some competitors grow their own special varieties that will survive being shot from catapults and cannons. The festivals are most dedicated to the competition for recipes and the competition for the largest pumpkin. This year that honor went to a 1818 pound beauty from Canada that was on display at the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx.

    The pumpkin is one of the main symbols of Halloween and the Wiccan holiday of Samhain, which is a celebration of the end of the year, the final harvest and the coming of winter. The earliest that a craved pumpkin was associated with Halloween is 1866. Throughout Britain and Ireland the turnip has traditionally been used at Halloween, but immigrants to North America used the native pumpkin, which are both readily available and much larger, making them easier to carve than turnips.

    In cooking, the the fleshy shell, seeds, leaves and flowers are all edible. Canned pureed pumpkin is readily available in stores, as are the small, sweet variety of fresh pumpkin for the ambitious cook to make their own puree or for stews. When it comes to pies, the easiest is the canned, my favorite being Libby’s with the recipe on the label, label, label. It’s the only recipe I have ever used for pumpkin pie and I’ve never has a complaint.

    Pumpkin and all it parts are also very nutritious, containing many vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidents. There is also an interesting medical study of pumpkin extract on type-1 diabetic rats:

    (P)ublished in July 2007, suggests that chemical compounds found in pumpkin promote regeneration of damaged pancreatic cells, resulting in increased bloodstream insulin levels. According to the research team leader, pumpkin extract may be “a very good product for pre-diabetic people, as well as those who already have diabetes,” possibly reducing or eliminating the need for insulin injections for some type-1 diabetics. It is unknown whether pumpkin extract has any effect on diabetes mellitus type 2, as it was not the subject of the study.

    One of my favorite recipes is Pumpkin Cheesecake with Bourbon Sour Cream Topping that is more popular than pie with my family.

    Photobucket

    Recipe and baking tips are below the fold